Rotavirus Infection: Epidemiology, Pathology, Vaccination

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Diarrheal infections remain the major cause of morbidity and mortality among children under 5 years of age. The rotavirus holds the leading position among principal diarrheal pathogens that include also norovirus, enteropathogenic and enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli. Rotaviruses are transmitted by the fecal-oral route and are extremely contagious and stable in the environment. This facilitates viral transmission, particularly in daycare centers and hospitals. Rotavirus infection causes acute gastroenteritis with diarrhea and dehydration of various degrees resulting primarily from destruction of intestinal villus enterocytes with subsequent impairment of the ion transport and absorption. The incidence of rotavirus infection peaks during the winter and spring in countries with temperate climate. Many children have asymptomatic infection that supports rotavirus circulation in the popula- tion. Several vaccines have been developed for specific prophylaxis of rotavirus infections and demonstrated protection from severe acute rotavirus gastroenteritis and all-cause diarrheal mortality.




Mayanskiy, N. A., Mayanskiy, A. N., & Kulichenko, T. V. (2015). Rotavirus Infection: Epidemiology, Pathology, Vaccination. Annals of the Russian Academy of Medical Sciences, 70(1), 47–55.

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